July 22, 2019 / 9:20 AM / a month ago

France finds wreckage of submarine which disappeared in 1968

U.S. company "Ocean Infinity", which specialises in underwater research, conduct further checks onboard the Norwegian ship "Seabed Constructor" during the second phase of the search for the wreckage of the Minerve submarine, in this image provided by the Marine Nationale on July 22, 2019. Onboard the Norwegian ship, representatives of the French 'Marine Nationale' as well as representatives of the Hydrographic & Oceanographic Service of the Navy (SHOM) coordinate research operations, in connection with the Mediterranean Maritime Prefecture (CECMED). The French Navy has found the wreckage of its 'Minerve' submarine, which disappeared off the coast of Toulon in the Mediterranean Sea in 1968, leading to the loss of 52 lives. Sebastien Chenal/Marine Nationale/Handout via REUTERS N

PARIS (Reuters) - The French Navy has found the wreckage of its ‘Minerve’ submarine, which disappeared off the coast of Toulon in the Mediterranean Sea in 1968, leading to the loss of 52 lives.

“We have just found the Minerve. It was a successful operation, a moment of relief and a demonstration of technical prowess. I would like to spare a thought for the families of those who have waited for this moment for so long,” said French Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly on Monday.

The government decided in 2018 to renew efforts to find the Minerve, following requests from the bereaved families, and found it thanks to the use of new sonar and drone technology.

The reason the submarine sank remains unknown.

Reporting by Marine Pennetier and Sophie Louet; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta/Leigh Thomas

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